By Emily Reynolds

As we emerge from the various lockdowns caused by the COVID 19 pandemic, new trends and developments surface every day, many of which have implications for outplacement. For example, many workers saw the pandemic as an opportunity to reevaluate their priorities, from how they spend their time and how they want to work, to whether they want to remain in the same vocation going forward. What may be surprising is that this trend isn’t restricted to frontline and management-level workers—executives are actively rethinking their career paths, too. 

People are revisiting their values to determine how to combine what is important to them with a fulfilling career path. For example, a recent study by Morning Consult (on behalf of Prudential) indicated that 87% of individuals want to continue working remotely at least one day a week. In another survey by career site Joblist, more than 30% of workers said they’d give up part of their pay for a better work-life balance, with parents willing to take a 5% pay cut. 

What is happening here? 

It is a fundamental shift in the way people view work and the role it plays in their lives. For millions of people around the world, the pandemic and resulting lockdowns gave workers at all levels a new perspective and the opportunity to re-think the future.  

We are starting to see this in our outplacement work as transition candidates are asking with far greater frequency, “What are the possibilities outside of the next corporate role?  What other things might I consider instead of a traditional job search?”  

To meet this growing and unprecedented need, we have designed Next Act, an alternative to the traditional concept of a job search.  

What is Next Act?

Next Act is the future of career planning, as it considers the whole person, not simply his or her abilities, skills, work experience, or even personality type. This new approach goes above and beyond. Through a proprietary framework, our outplacement coaches guide candidates through an enriching process to envision a holistic future, one that includes but is not limited to the next phase in their career. The end result can be a career path in a new function, new industry, or new business venture.  

Next Act invites individuals to explore, through coaching and technology support, a new way of considering the possibilities, whether contemplating retirement or following a job loss. These possibilities might include an exploration of that entrepreneurial endeavor that the individual often considered and never acted upon. Start a small business? Open a retail operation in their hometown? I knew one person who had longed to start an ice cream shop and finally did so!   

Other ideas include writing a book or memoir, pursuing speaking engagements, or looking at artistic skills and talents as possible money-making ventures.   

These ideas for Next Act hold greater appeal since the pandemic and, true to our commitment to “meet our candidates where they are,” BPI group has been striving to help individuals find the new path that best suits them. Next Act, through a carefully honed coaching process, is focused on the idea of “what’s next?” It is a call to action for these times.  

About Emily Reynolds 

Emily Reynolds is BPI group’s Managing Director of Outplacement and a member of the executive leadership team. In her role, she oversees the operation and growth of the firm’s worldwide Outplacement practice, including Executive Transition Services and Next Act. Read more about Emily >  

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Solutions: Next Act 

Momentum Video Series on Outplacement 

Taking the Lead: Career Transition in a Post-COVID World [Shortcast]